Could this Invention Save us from our Dependence on Oil? - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-19-2006, 11:20 PM Thread Starter
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Could this Invention Save us from our Dependence on Oil?

PORTLAND, Oregon -- A tiny chemical reactor that can convert vegetable oil directly into biodiesel could help farmers turn some of their crops into homegrown fuel to operate agricultural equipment instead of relying on costly imported oil.

"This is all about producing energy in such a way that it liberates people," said Goran Jovanovic, a chemical engineering professor at Oregon State University who developed the microreactor.

The device -- about the size of a credit card -- pumps vegetable oil and alcohol through tiny parallel channels, each smaller than a human hair, to convert the oil into biodiesel almost instantly.

By comparison, it takes more than a day to produce biodiesel with current technology.

Conventional production involves dissolving a catalyst, such as sodium hydroxide, in alcohol, then stirring it into vegetable oil in large vats for about two hours. The mixture then has to sit for 12 to 24 hours while a slow chemical reaction forms biodiesel along with glycerin, a byproduct.

The glycerin is separated and can be used to make other products, such as soaps, but it still contains the chemical catalyst, which must be neutralized and removed using hydrochloric acid, a long and costly process.

The microreactor under development by the university and the Oregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies Institute eliminates the mixing, the standing time and maybe even the need for a catalyst.

"If we're successful with this, nobody will ever make biodiesel any other way," Jovanovic said.

The device is small, but it can be stacked in banks to increase production levels to the volume required for commercial use, he said.

Biodiesel production on the farm also could reduce distribution costs by eliminating the need for tanker truck fuel delivery, part of the growing effort to meet fuel demand locally -- instead of relying on distant refineries and tanker transport.

"Distributed energy production means you can use local resources -- farmers can produce all the energy they need from what they grow on their own farms," Jovanovic said.


Thanks, D.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-19-2006, 11:28 PM
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RE: Could this Invention Save us from our Dependence on Oil?


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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-19-2006, 11:40 PM
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RE: Could this Invention Save us from our Dependence on Oil?

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Allright..........[xx(]

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-20-2006, 12:35 AM
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RE: Could this Invention Save us from our Dependence on Oil?

no, it cannot... because then we need vegetable oil.

Where do you suppose we get the 20 million barrels(is 55 gallons what they're always talking about when they say a barrel?)of vegetable oil we'd burn a day?

I am not too up on the current market, how much oil do we use a day, exactly? I know I use 2 gallons a day and it still costs too much-- 10 cents increase since yesterday, how many weeks will we see a dime a week increase and whos started the betting pool?

I'll put 20 bux on $3.37 being the high for diesel this summer=)

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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-20-2006, 06:19 AM
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RE: Could this Invention Save us from our Dependence on Oil?

Screw that. Myself and my car will be running off this...

http://chemistry.about.com/od/chemistryhowtoguide/ht/moonshine.htm

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-20-2006, 06:49 AM
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RE: Could this Invention Save us from our Dependence on Oil?

dude, you ever been on IN, IL, NE? there are tons of corn just waiting to be burned. lol



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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-20-2006, 07:00 AM
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RE: Could this Invention Save us from our Dependence on Oil?

Actually that is what Rudolph Diesel said when he invented his engine in the late 1800's, that it would be a bonanza for the farmer, since he could easily grow and make his own fuel and sell it. Diesel, Karl Benz and Maybach developed their engines about the same time in Germany, understandably there was not a drop of Diesel fuel or gasoline to be found anywhere, Diesel made his fuel from bean oil, in essence the engine was born as a Bio diesel engine, Benz and Maybach got their ingredient at the drug store to make their fuels.

Rudolph Diesel disappeared under mysterious conditions while crossing the channel in route to England, rumors say that the future barons of big oil where behind as right from the beginning the impact of his engine was being appreciated.

Neon, actually the barrel of oil is 42, gallons.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-20-2006, 07:18 AM
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RE: Could this Invention Save us from our Dependence on Oil?

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firstmb - 4/20/2006 1:20 AM

PORTLAND, Oregon -- A tiny chemical reactor that can convert vegetable oil directly into biodiesel could help farmers turn some of their crops into homegrown fuel to operate agricultural equipment instead of relying on costly imported oil.

"This is all about producing energy in such a way that it liberates people," said Goran Jovanovic, a chemical engineering professor at Oregon State University who developed the microreactor.

The device -- about the size of a credit card -- pumps vegetable oil and alcohol through tiny parallel channels, each smaller than a human hair, to convert the oil into biodiesel almost instantly.

By comparison, it takes more than a day to produce biodiesel with current technology.

Conventional production involves dissolving a catalyst, such as sodium hydroxide, in alcohol, then stirring it into vegetable oil in large vats for about two hours. The mixture then has to sit for 12 to 24 hours while a slow chemical reaction forms biodiesel along with glycerin, a byproduct.

The glycerin is separated and can be used to make other products, such as soaps, but it still contains the chemical catalyst, which must be neutralized and removed using hydrochloric acid, a long and costly process.

The microreactor under development by the university and the Oregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies Institute eliminates the mixing, the standing time and maybe even the need for a catalyst.

"If we're successful with this, nobody will ever make biodiesel any other way," Jovanovic said.

The device is small, but it can be stacked in banks to increase production levels to the volume required for commercial use, he said.

Biodiesel production on the farm also could reduce distribution costs by eliminating the need for tanker truck fuel delivery, part of the growing effort to meet fuel demand locally -- instead of relying on distant refineries and tanker transport.

"Distributed energy production means you can use local resources -- farmers can produce all the energy they need from what they grow on their own farms," Jovanovic said.
I've read a scientific paper on this and it is apparently not bullshit. If this works, it could change the world.

I am also bidding on work on a new project in the Ohio Valley where they are proposing using a nuclear plant to produce ethanol. Another good idea. Too bad we have a government that gives jack shit to these efforts while they pour everything into getting us to drill holes so we can become more dependent on oil. Why is that so surprising?

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

-President Barack Obama, 1st Inaugural address
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-20-2006, 07:21 AM
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RE: Could this Invention Save us from our Dependence on Oil?

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iNeon - 4/20/2006 2:35 AM

no, it cannot... because then we need vegetable oil.

Where do you suppose we get the 20 million barrels(is 55 gallons what they're always talking about when they say a barrel?)of vegetable oil we'd burn a day?

I am not too up on the current market, how much oil do we use a day, exactly? I know I use 2 gallons a day and it still costs too much-- 10 cents increase since yesterday, how many weeks will we see a dime a week increase and whos started the betting pool?

I'll put 20 bux on $3.37 being the high for diesel this summer=)
The paper I read said that this method could use any organic source - even garbage, to produce bio-diesel. Give that it does not need some high grade source like corn oil, this is entirely possible.

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

-President Barack Obama, 1st Inaugural address
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-20-2006, 07:21 AM
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RE: Could this Invention Save us from our Dependence on Oil?


The United States of America and Europe may have to cut back on our donations of free food grain to the developing world if we devote more of our land to the production of oilseeds.[|)]
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